By DANA SMITH
Tribune Staff Reporter
THE government’s plans to reform the energy sector may allow for an “energy credit programme” to be introduced, Environment and Housing Minister Kenred Dorsett said yesterday.
This will mean, he said, that consumers will be able to generate their own energy to power their homes through solar, wind, and other types of renewable energy sources “to be fed into the grid”.
The Southern Shores MP hailed Prime Minister Perry Christie’s energy reform announcement – which will also see the creation of two new companies to replace BEC – as “forging ahead” in the government’s quest to provide affordable and efficient energy service.
“I have spoken many times before on the subject of grid tie-in and the use of renewable energy sources since taking office as Minister of the Environment and Housing,” Mr Dorsett said. “However the Prime Minister’s statement makes abundantly clear this government’s plans to bring relief to the Bahamian people.
“The Progressive Liberal Party promised to make energy more affordable for our citizens in our Charter for Governance and we are taking the steps necessary to ensure that it happens.”
Bahamians should take special note, Mr Dorsett said, that the government plans to provide “affordable energy supplies to all customers with the capacity to meet the long term growth in the demand for energy”, as well as an energy sector that is 30 per cent powered by renewable energy by 2030, including 10 per cent of the sector’s power to come from residential energy self-generation.
“This will mean that consumers will be able to generate their own energy to power their homes through solar, wind and other types of renewable energy sources to be fed into the grid,” he said.
“Not only will this aid in reducing the cost of energy to consumers and reducing the demand for publicly generated energy. It will also allow for a possible energy credit programme to be introduced.
“This announcement is also good news for persons who would like to enter the energy sector as entrepreneurs as one of our objectives is to provide investment opportunities for Bahamians and spin-off opportunities within the nation’s economy.”
The government is “resolute” in following this new course that has been charted to lower the cost of living and doing business in the country and thereby bringing relief to our people, Mr Dorsett said.